Folke Rabe: Cyclone (1984/85)
Electro-acoustic music, comment

What characterizes an annihalation process? I don't believe that catastrophes necessarily make a lot of noise.

There are several indications that we are in the midst of a world crisis that has been going on for a long while - a crisis that is stealthy rather than dramatic. For a long time we believed that the Swedish nature paradise was not exposed to the risks that threaten more densely populated parts of the world. Late in the day we have become aware of the areas, particularly in Eastern Europe, where industrial exploitation has carried on regardless, while the grim effects on the physical environment have been ignored. Since the end of the 1980s we have begun to see drastic examples of the effects of this development even here in Sweden.

When I composed an electro-acoustic work in 1984/85 I wanted to produce music that on some plane made this sort of process of slow, successive collapse manifest. The great cycles, the huge downward spiral, the retarded movements are, I feel, characteristic metaphors. Cyclone was commissioned by the Swedish Concert Institute and was produced in Studio 1 at the Electronic Music Studio in Stockholm. It was first performed in a radio broadcast from Radio WNYC in New York in March, 1985.

Folke Rabe